Timber Processing’s June issue spotlights Tolleson Lumber Co. for its new, one-of-a-kind PSI/Hi-Tech/Perception log merchandising system at its Preston, Georgia southern pine sawmill. Softwood lumber production remains high despite softening markets, falling housing starts and general economic volatility.
International Paper has reached an agreement with Champion International for the purchase of Champion for $75 per share or a total value of $7.3 billion. Champion’s board of directors accepted the offer on May 12. The deal is subect to regulatory approvals. IP had increased its bid from $6.2 billion in response to an increased bid from Finland’s UPM-Kymmene.
Tolleson Lumber Co., one of the top independent producers of southern yellow pine lumber, has made a considerable investment ($15 million) upgrading its green end at its Preston and Perry sawmills, including CAE Newnes-McGehee curve-sawing gangs and lineal edgers. But the major news is the Preston facility's new Hi-Tech/PSI "log trimmer" system, which was a team effort from PSI Sales, Inc. (log ladders, conveying and design), Hi-Tech Engineering (design and PLC controls) and Perceptron (scanning and optimization software).
Just one year ago, softwood lumber producers were on a roll, setting regional production records and enjoying the longest period of economic expansion in U.S. history. Housing starts continued to soar as lumber demand increased. But what a difference a year makes: Rising interest rates and falling housing starts are softening softwood lumber markets, while high fuel prices have pinched profit margins for every transaction within the forest products chain.
Continuously escalating environmental regulations make it less and less acceptable to burn and bury wood scrap. Simply piling it up is sure to attract notice from the EPA or a state agency. Some mills have found it economical to install waste chippers, grinders or hogs while others do not have the capital or the waste volume to justify it. Similarly, some companies may be interested in focusing on a core product.
Over the past decade we have been working with leading lumber manufacturers implementing our fully integrated Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system designed exclusively for the lumber industry. The motivation for sophisticated management tools originated from the larger pulp and paper parents who demanded real time integrated management systems.
USNR introduces a new Vertical Shape Sawing System. Features include: never lets go of the cant; takes less floor space, has greater throughput; needs only 1 operator; maintenance is easy; chip quality has been improved; and installed cost is lower. USNR says the vertical process offers higher production shape sawing while maintaining the recovery benefits of horizontal curve sawing.
Pioneer Machinery, based in West Columbia, SC, is representing the medium and heavy unit lines of New Holland Construction. New Holland construction, a division of CNH Global, is now the world's third largest construction equipment manufacturer fooling the merger of New Holland and Case Corp. earlier this year. "This is a tremendous new partnership for our company," says Pioneer Machinery CEO Gar Scott.